PB: Marathon Training
PhillyBoy has food on the mind a lot these days. But running is on his mind more. He has been training for a marathon for three months now, and his appetite and diet are healthier than ever! We have received a lot of questions about his training, and he is ready to share his thoughts. Here is his first official post as an official member of RhodeyGirl Tests! Here goes nothing...
Training for a marathon has been an amazing and fun experience so far, and I hope some of the information I share here can be helpful to anyone who is considering running a marathon. If I have missed any topics – please let me know and I’ll be sure to address them!
By no means do I consider myself an expert or authority on this at all!! I am simply training for my first marathon and have been running consistently for about 10 years now. I have learned so much from reading, trying things and especially from talking to other runners – so I look forward to sharing some of my experiences!
Philadelphia Half Marathon 2009
Why am I running the marathon?
My 2010 New Year’s resolution was to run a marathon. Last year, RG and I ran two half marathons (Philly HM in November 2009 & Disney HM in January 2010) and I have done a handful of 10 mile races. So as a person who continuously likes to challenge himself, running a full marathon was the next logical step. As RG has mentioned in other posts, I’m an attorney. So I approached the marathon a lot like I approached the bar exam. I knew that I would have a LOT to learn, that I would not be able to “cram”, that preparation was key and that doing this was my choice. No one was forcing me to do this – so I better have fun with it or just stop.
I went online and found a training schedule. We have used Hal Higdon’s training schedule for our previous half marathons – so I decided to stick with Hal and use his Novice Marathon Training Plan. Poor RG has had to listen to me recite each week what mileage I have to do. But reading the schedule and the explanations of each week has become a fun little ritual for me. I am now in Week 14 of 18 and am approaching the dreaded Week 15… known in our house as “5, 10, 5, 20 Week.”
I’m a busy guy – and I’m sure all of you have crazy schedules and commitments as well. You are probably thinking, “I don’t exactly have or want to carve out an extra hour or 2 each day to train for a marathon.” Well if you want to, I’m telling you that you CAN. I look forward to telling you a bit about how I have done it. A little preview:
- As Forrest Gump said, you can learn a lot from a person by their shoes: How I decided which shoes to buy, my thoughts on footwear for running, and how I made sure that my shoes were broken in but not worn down before race day! And NO, I am NOT a barefoot runner (but I did read the book!)
- Nutrition: When you get past the 10 milers, your diet becomes crucial to the overall success and enjoyment of the marathon training program. I learned that it’s not just about water. I will discuss eating before, during, and after runs…yes, I said during! I’ve had my share of bad runs due to malnutrition – during other training programs and once during this training program on my 15 miler. There are easy preventative ways to avoid this.
- Stretching/Injury Prevention: I have had my share of small annoying injuries all over my legs – front, back, bottom, top, and even those pains that traveled all over. I’ve had foot pain on my arches, heels, and underneath. I would never dare say that I have “had it all” but I have had enough injuries to know truly that an ounce of prevention is a pound of cure.
- How I have trained for this marathon – and still had fun: Like I said earlier, doing a marathon is a choice. Unless you are some sort of masochist, you are doing this to have fun. So far, I’ve been fortunate to have had a lot of fun during my training. I’ve been learning a lot about myself, my limitations, and more importantly – what I can do when I push myself. But the most important lesson I have learned is how to make it fun and enjoyable.
- (Added by RhodeyGirl) PB’s Addiction to Chia Seeds: Every morning PB eats chia seed gel- straight up. It has gotten to the point where I can expect a few chia seeds on his chin before he goes out for a training run. He must share more about this new obsession.
Any questions for me? Have any of you done a marathon? Any 1st timer tips?